New estimate on Iraqi war deaths – one in forty

Just released (see, for example, this Reuters article) is a new study, which aimed to estimate the number of Iraqis who have died as a result of the US invasion in 2003. The methodology involved interviewing randomly sampled families, rather than more passive studies involving, for example, morgue reports. The conclusion is that the death rate since the invasion has been about two and a half times higher than that before the invasion, as a result of all causes — including violence, breakdown in medical services, etc. This translates into 655 000 additional deaths, or one in forty Iraqis.

It is studies of this sort which once again show that invading a stable country, even one ruled by a brutal regime, does NOT improve the lives of the people within the country. And it certainly can’t improve the world’s image of the invading country. I just hope that one day soon American society will start really asking itself how this tragedy could have been allowed to happen, and how the US world view needs to change to ensure that it doesn’t happen again.